Byron Rom Jensen - ENS Stories from a Current Lecturer

Byron Rom-Jensen has acted as University Lecturer in Nordic Studies since January 2022. A historian by training, Byron has taught and supervised MA students in a range of topics relating to the Nordic region and its connections to Europe and the world.
Byron Rom Jensen interests and teaching

Byron’s interest in the Nordic region is in part a story of personal discovery. “I moved to Denmark in 2012 to take my own MA degree. The longer I stayed in Denmark, the more curious I became about the country I lived in, its past and present, quirks and idiosyncrasies, beliefs and expectations. Eventually, this broadened to a wider fascination with the region and the way that the ‘Nordic’ seems to be simultaneously omnipresent and ephemeral.”

This interest eventually inspired Byron’s PhD dissertation at Aarhus University, where he explored the images of the Scandinavian countries in the United States and their impact on US policymaking. Have the Nordic countries affected US politics? The results are quite varied, says Byron. “There are a lot of failed attempts, efforts to recreate Nordic outcomes in American environments. But failure is fascinating too.”

Following his PhD, Byron was a postdoctoral researcher on a project tracing the Nordic model as a concept in its global circulations from 1970 to 2020. These attempts to track the international and global spread of Nordic model(s) appear in Byron’s teaching, including on the Politics of Nordic Cooperation, Nordic Labor Movements, and Nordic Societies and Cultures. In these courses, Byron encourages students to examine the Nordic region through their own unique personal perspectives, whether they are a native of Finland or just arrived. “To truly understand the Nordics, one cannot stay inside the region. You need to understand it in its totality. And for that, all are welcome.”